Following the Cyprus government approval of the introduction of the Digital Nomad Visa Scheme in Cyprus, this specific visa program provides particular incentives for people who would like to take advantage of all the benefits of living in Cyprus while working for companies who operate outside the country.
What is the “Cyprus digital nomad visa”
The “Cyprus Digital Nomad Visa” Scheme allows nationals from non-EU and non-EEA countries, who can perform their work location-independently using telecommunications technology, to reside temporarily in Cyprus and work for an employer registered abroad or perform work through telecommunications technology for companies or clients located abroad.
The Scheme’s goal is to strengthen Cyprus as a center for the provision of electronic services, where in combination with the other advantages offered by Cyprus, the attraction of digital nomads will contribute to the development of the business ecosystem and consequently to the economic development of the country. The introduction of the “Cyprus Digital Nomad Visa Scheme” is included in the Strategy for Attracting Businesses for Activities or/and Expansion of their Activities in Cyprus.
Who can benefit Non-EU or non-EEA nationals who:
Can perform work remotely through telecommunications technology;
Are employed in a company registered abroad, for which they can work location-independently, or are self-employed offering services remotely for clients located abroad;
Can prove that they have stable and sufficient monthly net income of at least €3500 (after the deduction of contributions and taxes).
What are the benefits
Individuals that are granted with a Digital Nomad residence permit will benefit from the following:
Right of residence for a year in Cyprus, with a possibility of renewal for further two years.
Right of residence for family members, for the same period as the Digital Nomad, without the right to be employed of perform economic activity in Cyprus.
If they reside in the Republic for one of more periods that in total exceed 183 days within the same tax year, then they are considered tax residents of Cyprus, provided they are not tax residents in any other country.
Digital Nomad’s family members can reside in Cyprus for the same period as the Digital Nomad, without the right to be employed of perform any economic activity in Cyprus.
Family members include the spouse/ partner in a civil union and underaged children.
Family members also need to obtain a temporary residence permit following the procedure below.
Within 3 months of arrival, the applicant should submit the relevant application along with the required documents, as stated in the relevant document lists, at the Offices of the Department in Nicosia, after arranging an appointment through the online platform, to obtain a temporary residence permit. All documents accompanying application forms should be officially translated and duly certified/ ratified.
In case the applicant legally resides in Cyprus under a different status, he/she has the right to submit the relevant application to be granted a temporary residence permit as a Digital Nomad, at the Civil Registry and Migration Department in Nicosia.
Applications can be submitted personally or through an authorized representative.
Applications that are not accompanied by all the required documents will not be accepted for consideration.
Any change in the applicant’s data during the examination of the application should be notified immediately to the Department.
For the application submission, the amount for applicable fees shall be paid as stated below.
For the issuance of the temporary residence permit capturing of biometric data (photo and fingerprints) and signature of the third country national is necessary, which is done with the presentation of the application submission receipt and a valid travel document. The biometric data can be captured at the same time or after the application submission, at the offices of the Department in Nicosia or at the district unit of the Aliens and Immigration Service of the Police of the district of residence of the third country national. From persons who have not reached the age of six years at the time of submitting the application only the photo is captured. This data is also captured for the renewal of the temporary residence permit.
Applications for renewal should be submitted to the Civil Registry and Migration Department in Nicosia along with the necessary accompanying documents, at least one month before the temporary residence permit’s expiration date. For the application submission, the amount for applicable fees shall be paid as stated below.
In case the application is approved, the applicant will receive a letter notifying them on how to receive their temporary residence permit.
In case the application is rejected, the applicant will receive a letter informing them for the rejection reasons.
The time of examination is between 5 – 7 weeks.
Duration of temporary residence permit
A first temporary residence permit is issued with a validity of one year.
In case of renewal, the temporary residence permit is issued with a validity of maximum two years.
The law Firm of NASOS A. KYRIAKIDES AND PARTNERS LLC can provide full legal assistance in applying for a Digital Nomad Visa, or for any other immigration services required.
Foreign nationals can work or stay in Cyprus if they have an income of 40,000 euros annually, a privately-owned house of 250,000, when they are investors or self-employed or employees under certain conditions:
The above is provided in rules that the Cabinet has approved, according to which an immigration permit may be granted to foreign nationals who fall under the following categories:
Self-employed foreign nationals who intend to work in a business in the Republic of Cyprus provided that they have the qualifications to exercise this profession, have the necessary permits for the job, have sufficient funds, have settled any dues to Social Insurance and Income Tax, and the specific job will benefit the Republic.
Foreign nationals employed provided they will not constitute unjustified competition in their sector. The employer and the employee must have signed a relevant agreement, duly certified and the employer must satisfy the preconditions to employ foreign nationals and have settled any dues to Social Insurance and Income Tax.
Foreign nationals who are investors, meaning persons who have proceeded with an important investment in the Republic, with funds coming from legal sources.
Self-supported foreign nationals, meaning people who intend to live in Cyprus without exercising any profession but who have a secured income of 40,000 euros annually, increased by 10,000 euros for every additional member of the family, as well as a privately-owned house valued at 250,000.
Additionally, the foreign nationals must have a valid passport or other travel document and will not constitute threat to national security or public order or public health.
The Law Firm of NASOS A. KYRIAKIDES AND PARTNERS LLC, can provide full legal support on all procedures and application with the Ministry of Interior for obtaining Cyprus residence permit.
The Council of Ministers of Cyprus approved on October 15th 2021, the “Strategy for Attracting Businesses for Activities or/and Expansion of their Activities in Cyprus”. The Strategy is a very important initiative towards attracting both international investments and talent, including a series of actions and reforms in several areas of intervention, aiming to enhance Cyprus’ position as an international high-growth business centre, such as the provision of Cyprus residence permits for the Foreign Interest Companies UBOs and employees and their family members.
Companies must meet the following criteria Criteria:
Third country shareholders should own the majority of the company’s shares.
Deposited amount of at least €200.000, supported by a Bank SWIFT or other similar document which proves a foreign direct investment by the ultimate beneficial owner, legally admitted to Cyprus (This requirement only applies to companies which will employ staff from third countries for the first time.)
The Company should operate in independent offices in Cyprus and pursuant to the relevant regulations.
Directors – This category includes the Directors or Partners registered in the Registrar of Companies and Official Receiver, the General Managers of branches and of mother companies of alien companies, the Departmental Managers and the Project Managers. Minimum acceptable gross salary is €4.000 Euro and the maximum number of persons for this category is 5.
Middle Management Executives and other Key Personnel – This category includes the upper / middle management personnel and the other administrative, secretarial, or technical staff. Minimum acceptable gross salary amount is between €2.000 Euro and the maximum number of persons for this category is 10.
Specialists – Companies are entitled to employ third country nationals in professions and / or with skills relevant to the Company’s operating activities. The minimum acceptable gross salary amount for this category is €2.000 Euro.
Support Staff – There is no maximum number for the employment of third-country nationals under this category, provided that the necessary approvals from Department of Labour have been obtained.
Types of eligible Companies
Public companies registered on any recognized stock exchange.
Companies of international activities (formerly off-shore), which operated before the change of regime, whose data are held by the Central Bank.
Cypriot shipping companies.
Cypriot high-tech/innovation companies*
Cypriot pharmaceutical companies or Cypriot companies active in the fields of biogenetics and biotechnology.
Companies of whom the majority of the total share capital is owned by persons who have acquired Cypriot citizenship by naturalization based on economic criteria, provided that they prove that the conditions under which they were naturalized continue to be met.
An enterprise qualifies as ‘High Technology Company’ if:
it is already established and has a presence in the market, and
it has a high level or experimental R&D intensity, and
it developed product/s that fall into one of the following categories: products related to aviation and space industry, computers, electronic and telecommunication products, pharmaceuticals, biomedical, research and development equipment, electrical machinery, chemicals, non-electrical machinery.
The Law Firm of NASOS A. KYRIAKIDES AND PARTNERS LLC can provide full legal support on all procedures and application with the Ministry of Interior for obtaining Cyprus residence permit.
The agreements were signed at the Presidential Palace
The modernization of the state technological infrastructure and the acceleration of the adoption of cloud services in the public and private sector of Cyprus are the main objectives of the Memorandum of Cooperation signed on Tuesday at the Presidential Office between the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digital Policy of Cyprus and Amazon Web Services. (AWS).
Undersecretary Kyriakos Kokkinos said after the signing ceremony that the cooperation with Amazon Web Services opens a new era of opportunities for the country, allowing and facilitating the adoption of the cloud in all areas of government and industry.
On behalf of Amazon Web Services, European Public Sector Director Cameron Brooks stated that AWS is part of the wider digital transformation of Cyprus, as the country launches a new era of innovation, with entrepreneurs, public organizations and companies sharing the vision of a modern
“Through this Memorandum of Understanding, we are committed to supporting this vision by offering initiatives that will promote innovation, help grow local businesses, support the modernization of technology infrastructure and develop digital skills for future generations “, he added.
As per DIRECTIVE 2011/83/EU OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 25 October 2011, on consumer rights:
EU consumer protection rules ensure that when you buy goods and services in the EU you have clear information on the product or service you’re buying, its price, shipping and delivery costs as well as on your rights when things go wrong.
Under EU rules, a trader must repair, replace, reduce the price or give you a refund if goods you bought turn out to be faulty or do not look or work as advertised.
If you bought a product or a service online or outside of a shop (by telephone, mail order, from a door-to-door salesperson), you also have the right to cancel and return your order within 14 days, for any reason and without a justification.
The below website may give further guidance as to EU consumers rights and complaints:
Cyprus government approves new tax scheme for foreign workers and companies
The Cabinet of Ministers of Cyprus on Tuesday 11 of May approved a new tax incentives scheme aimed at attracting foreign companies and high-quality workers to Cyprus to relocate their headquarters in Cyprus.
In statements made after the Cabinet meeting, Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides said additional measures are expected to be implemented in order to further incentivise foreign workers into relocating to Cyprus to be implemented by the Ministry of Interior.
“We are convinced that this scheme is one of the most competitive of its kind in the European Union,” Petrides said.
“There is already a lot of interest, and it particularly concerns high-tech companies, which in recent years seem to choose the island as a place to relocate their headquarters,” the minister added.
Petrides also explained that the government is confident that the scheme will further promote the development of the technology sector in Cyprus, as both a medium and long-term strategic objective. The main advantages are the following:
a.50 per cent tax break for workers receiving upwards of €55,000 in annual wages.
The time period for which the tax break would be applicable will be extended to 17 years, up from its current period of 10 years.
Spouses of employees of third countries, to be able to work in Cyprus.
The time period for the tax break kicks in the worker’s first year of employment in Cyprus.
Moreover, the above terms will also be applied retroactively to current eligible workers making more than €55,000 in annual wages, provided that they resided abroad for 12 straight years before they started working in Cyprus. A grace period of two years will be given to new employees, as well as a period of six months to existing workers, in order for them to gain the necessary prerequisite criteria for the scheme.
This concerns cases where an employee’s initial remuneration started at an amount below the minimum annual salary of €55,000.
“Through this relocation, the tax base is expanded and consequently the state’s tax revenues,” the minister concluded.
The Department of Population and Migration has proceeded with a revision and subsequent improvement of the criteria for granting an immigration permit to applicants who are third country (Non-EU) nationals and who invest in Cyprus.
1.1 In accordance with the provisions of Regulation 6(2) of the Foreign and Immigration Regulations, the Minister of Interior decided to issue immigration permits to third-country nationals, in cases of investments that meet the requirements outlined below.
1.2 The applicant must meet one of the investment criteria set out in paragraph 2.1, as well as the qualitative criteria set out in paragraph 3 below. It is noted that the funds to be used for the investment have to come from abroad.
2.1 The applicant must make an investment of at least €300,000 in one of the following investment categories:
(A) Investment in a house/apartment: purchase of a house or apartment from a land development company, which should be for a first sale of at least €300,000 (+ VAT).
(B) Investment in real estate (excluding houses/apartments): purchase of another form of real estate such as offices, shops, hotels or similar developments or a combination of them with a total value of €300,000. Such an investment may involve a resale property.
(C) Investment in the equity capital of a Cyprus registered company with activities and staff in Cyprus: The investment must have a value of at least €300,000 in the equity capital of the company, which is both based and active in the Republic of Cyprus and has a proven physical presence in Cyprus and employs at least five (5) people.
(D) Investment in units of a Cyprus Collective Investment Enterprise (either AIF / AIFLNP / RAIF).
It is understood that any alienation of the holder of the immigration permit from the investment in which he/she has made without its immediate replacement with another of the same or greater value, which should meet the conditions set out above, will result in activation of the process of cancellation of the permit under the provisions of Regulation 6 of the Immigration Regulations.
2.2 The applicant must, in addition to the investment under paragraph 2.1 above, be able to prove that he/she has at his/her disposal an insured annual income of at least €30,000. The annual income increases by €5,000 for each dependent family member respectively and €8,000 for each dependent parent (of the applicant and/or his/her spouse). This income may emanate from salaries, pensions, dividends from shares, bank deposits, rents, etc. coming from abroad in cases where the applicant chooses to invest as per paragraph 2.1.(A) above. The calculation of the total income may include that of the spouse.
In instances where the applicant chooses to invest as per paragraphs 2.1.(B), 2.1.(C) or 2.1.(D) above the applicant’s total income or part of it may also be derived from sources or activities within the Republic of Cyprus.
3.1 The applicant and the spouse must submit a clean criminal record certificate from their country of residence or from the Republic in case they reside in Cyprus.
3.2 The applicant and the spouse shall certify that they do not intend to be employed in the Republic except as directors of a company in which they have chosen to invest under this policy.
3.3 In cases where the investment does not relate to the share capital of a company, the applicant and/or the spouse may be shareholders in companies registered in Cyprus and the income from dividends in such companies may not be considered as an impediment for the purposes of obtaining the immigration permit. They may also hold the position of director in such companies without pay.
3.4 In cases where the applicant chooses to invest as per paragraphs 2.1.(B), 2.1.(C) or 2.1.(D), he/she should present data on his/her place of residence in the Republic by way of producing, for example, a title deed of property, a sale purchase agreement or rental agreement).
We would like to bring to your attention that according to the Cyprus Company Law, Cap. 113 all Companies are liable to pay the levy of €350 for the year 2018.
Please note that the deadline for the payment is 30/06/2018. If the levy is not paid till 30/06/2018, penalties will be imposed as follows:
• amount due to be paid is €385 if paid between 01/7/2018 – 30/08/2018;
• amount due to be paid is €490 if paid between 01/09/2018 – 30/11/2018;
• amount due to be paid is €500 if paid later than 30/11/2018.
Non-payment of the levy may result the deregistration (strike off) of the company from the Registry. The reinstatement of the company to the Registry can be effected only through Court Order.
Please contact our team at email@example.com for further assistance by 15th of June 2018 the latest in order to facilitate the electronic payment on your behalf.
On April 19 the Latvian parliament with majority votes supported a bill banning Latvia’s banks from doing business with shell companies in the first reading.
Under the draft law, the shell company is defined as an entity that fits one or several of the following three criteria. Firstly, there is no actual economic activity and no documentary proof to the contrary. Secondly, the entity is registered in a jurisdiction where companies are not required to submit to the authorities their financial statements. Thirdly, the entity has no place of business in its country of domicile.
The bill says banks will have to cease cooperation with shell companies within 14 days and close their accounts within 60 days. Therefore clients have time to finalize their business and move assets abroad freely until end of June 2018.
Following this period, these clients will be able to retrieve the money to their accounts in the holder bank or another one, but the clients will not be able to use this money for business.
This serves as a last call to businesses to abandon old style tax-free and audit-free structures, and relocate their business and banking to more reputable jurisdictions like Cyprus and others benefiting from minimal tax obligations but complying fully with all EU and international standards and requirements.
Should you require any advice on closure of Latvian bank accounts, or solutions for relocating your businesses and funds, please get in touch with us and NAKLAW team will be happy to help!
Nasos A. Kyriakides & Partners LLC is participating at the VEDOMOSTI LEGAL FORUM in Moscow on April 12th and 13th.
You can visit our booth No. 1 to discuss the latest legal developments in Cyprus companies, Cyprus banks, Tax issues, Cyprus passport by investment and any other questions that you may have.
Furthermore following the liquidation of ABLV Bank in Latvia and near term closure of all offshore accounts in Latvian banks, our Firm as the Major Law firm in representing depositors of ABLV and other banks. Therefore whilst in Moscow we are also available to meet regarding this matter and present possible legal steps for recovery of blocked deposits as well as further solutions for banking.
Senior members of our Firm will attend the forum, including Mr. Nasos Kyriakides, the Managing Director of our Firm and Mr. Martins Rozitis – Legal Consultant from Latvian branch.
You can book an appointment with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or come directly to our booth in VEDOMOSTI LEGAL FORUM in Moscow, Marriott Royal Avrora Hotel on 12. and 13. April.